“And when she could not longer hide him, she took for him an ark of bulrushes, and daubed it with slime and with pitch, and put the child therein; and she laid it in the flags by the river’s brink” (Exodus 2:3).
It is interesting to compare the three “arks” mentioned in Scripture. The Hebrew word means, simply, “box-like container.” The first was the great ark of Noah, overlaid and inlaid with “pitch” (Genesis 6:14). This was not a petroleum-based pitch, for oil is a fossil fuel probably formed in the upheavals of the Flood. The word pitch (Hebrew, kaphar) simply means “covering” and is usually translated “atonement” (e.g., in Leviticus 17:11).
Moses’ ark, on the other hand, was daubed with slime and pitch, and this pitch was a petroliferous material. Finally, God’s “Ark of the Covenant,” built for the holy place in the tabernacle, was overlaid “with pure gold” (Exodus 25:11). The first ark preserved the founders of the Gentile civilization; the second preserved the prophet of the Jewish dispensation; the third preserved the inscribed divine words for the saved of all generations (Exodus 31:17,18; Deuteronomy 10:1–5).
Noah’s ark, like the economy which he established, was built strong enough to endure for an extended period of peril. Moses’ ark, like the economy which he founded, was enduring enough only for its immediate purpose.
God’s Ark and its sacred contents, on the other hand, will last forever. When Nebuchadnezzar carried away all the treasures of the temple (II Chronicles 36:18,19), no mention was made of this greatest of all treasures. John, in the last book of the Bible, reveals why. “And the temple of God was opened in heaven, and there was seen in His temple the Ark of His Testament” (Revelation I 1:19), forever reminding the people of God of His eternal word. HMM